Though researching your family history is fun, there never seems to be enough time for it. To make your research more efficient, MyHeritage has introduced a neat tool that’s bound to save you tons of time. Just post your family tree online and sit back while MyHeritage Record Matching scours millions of records for information on your family. It’s like Ancestry.com’s shaky leaf, but with even more powerful searching.
The MyHeritage Smart Matching feature already looked for matches between people in your tree and the 1.3 billion profiles on MyHeritage. The new Record Matching tool finds matches in historical records on MyHeritage and other sites, and it quite accurately detects matches, even if the names aren’t spelled exactly the same. Record Matching is the only automated genealogy search that finds matches in textual sources, such as newspaper articles and books.
You can use the MyHeritage SuperSearch (click on the Research tab) to search for names one by one, but Record Matching looks for all the names in your tree. To take advantage of this new timesaver, just follow these steps.
1. First, put your family tree on the MyHeritage website in one of three ways:
1. Create your family tree online.
2. Use the free Family Tree Builder software for Windows, available at myheritage.com, and then upload your file to MyHeritage.
3. Use another program to generate a GEDCOM file and upload it.
You can include pictures and make your tree public, or limit access to only people you invite. A MyHeritage online family tree with up to 250 names and 250MB of storage is free, one with up to 2,500 names and 500MB of storage is $6.25 per month (called a Premium account), and unlimited names and storage costs $9.95 per month (a PremiumPlus account).
2. Next, access the matching record report. Both Smart Matching and Record Matching are free for all family trees on MyHeritage, though you’ll need to subscribe or purchase credits to see some matching records. Smart Matching runs regularly to cover updates in family trees, and Record Matching runs regularly to catch new record collections. You’ll receive e-mail updates to alert you to new matches. To see them, select the Family Tree tab on MyHeritage and click on Record Matches. Or from Family Tree Builder 7.0, go to Tree view and click on the Profile link for someone in the home position, or right-click on any name and select Person and then Profile Page. The link to Record Matches is under Research.
3. Customize the matching record report. View and sort the matches by collection, people, number of matches or number of pending matches. Click on Filtering Options to filter matches by confidence level, matching status and record type. The weakest matches get one star and are hidden by default. Click on a blue button to view the matching record.
4. Review the matching records. Information on a person in your family tree is summarized on the left side of the screen and an extract of the historical record appears on the right. Click on a record title to view the original record.
5. View and save your records. You can view matches from Find A Grave, WikiTree, Canadian Headstones; and the Social Security Death Index for free. To see most records on the site, you need a MyHeritage Data Subscription ($76.20 a year) or credits (5,600 credits valid for 180 days cost $39.95). That gives you access to all US census records, newspapers from NewspaperArchive, family history books, family trees, English and Welsh censuses and civil registration indexes (not yet included in Record Matching), and more.
A subscription to World Vital Records, which is owned by MyHeritage, includes a complimentary MyHeritage Data Subscription. World Vital Records costs $16.25 a month or $89.99 a year. Now, family trees on Geni, which MyHeritage acquired last year, also return Record Matches as well as Smart Matches.
Click on the magnifying glass icon with a plus sign to zoom in on the image. To save it to your computer, click on the down arrow. That opens the image in a new browser tab. Right-click on the image, select Save As, choose a folder, name the file and save. If the record correctly matches the person in your tree, click the Confirm button. If not, click the Reject button. After you confirm a matching record, update your family file with the new information. Family Tree Builder 7.0 synchronizes the family tree on your computer with your tree on MyHeritage.
From the July/August 2013 Family Tree Magazine